Good Party?

A reading for Thursday, January 21, 2016: Luke 15:8-10.

I once heard Fred Craddock preach about parties. He talked about the prodigal son story and how at the end of the story the father gives a great party. If he had lived next door to the family, he wondered if he would have gone to the party or not? Perhaps he would have judged the younger son as unworthy too, or maybe he would just have been too sensible and practical for a wasteful party like that one. Craddock wonders about parties.

Notice in the story Jesus tells about the woman and the lost coin, that at the end of the story she throws a party when the coin is found. We almost skip over that part, don't we? The coin is found, compared to the lost sinner, and that's the important part. Right? The party is almost an afterthought for most sensible, practical Christians. But what about the party? It seems like the party is just as important, to celebrate the goodness of God and the discovery of salvation.

Craddock said that the mark of any good church, and any good Christian for that matter, is the kind of parties we have. Does the church know how to throw a good, rollicking fun party? Do we know how to celebrate something important? Not just a "fellowship" event, or a "mission" type event where we do something useful together. I am talking about just a plain party, with wasteful joy and impractical celebration. It seems like the party like that is just as important, to celebrate the goodness of God and the discovery of salvation in our own lives whenever we find it.

Jesus said, "I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”


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